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Believe it or not, I wrote this swampy R&B track in my apartment in New York City! I had hit a bit of a writing wall and I was listening to an old interview with one of my all time favorite guitarists, Adrian Belew. Amazingly, he told a story about how he was trying to write and was having a difficult time as well, when someone suggested trying different tunings on his guitar, bringing in new voicing’s and new chords. According to Adrian, this worked like a charm. He said he had posted some of the alternative tunings so I went to his site, tried the first one and wouldn’t you know it? The music for In Front Of Your Eyes was written that evening! Thanks Adrian!
The first song recorded for this album two years ago, The Show is a direct descendant of my greatest musical influences, the British rockers! Queen, Peter Gabriel, The Police, Led Zeppelin, Bowie… they’re all in there. That’s the reason I called this record “Influence,” because every painting you have ever seen, every song you’ve ever heard, every work of art in every medium imaginable is influenced by someone who came before you. I gratefully acknowledge my predecessors and honor them by taking their influence and making new music, which is made my own but with their lessons deep within my soul. This album touches on a number of my favorite musical influences and though it is a bit genre schizophrenic, it is sonically quite coherent… No gimmicks, no hardcore effects or sound editing… just really good songs, played really well by really good musicians. Enjoy!
Although I have always been a fan of Bruce Springsteen, I am somewhat embarrassed to admit that I hadn’t actually seen him live until this year at Madison Square Garden in New York City. I know, I know, mea culpa… I’d heard all the stories of 3-plus hour shows, the energy, the unmitigated love fests between The Boss and his flock and yes… It’s all true. So after a tremendous night digging Bruce and The E-Street Band, I retired to my apartment and wrote this catchy little number. I like to think that the Boss and his crew would dig it too. There are other influences in the song as well but there’s no doubt that Bruce was the primary musical inspiration for this one.
Toronto is a great town and it’s home to one of my favorite bands of all time, Rush! So naturally I was cranking their music in my head while tooling around the streets, parks and museums of “The Six” from the moment I landed at old YYZ! Cut to a few weeks into my stay when I couldn’t help overhearing a conversation being had by a number of Canadians and Europeans about guns in America and how out of hand the problem of mass shootings has become. Normally I might have interjected but their conversation sent me into creative mode, which is one of my defaults when I find something extremely upsetting. I came up with the concept of a song written from the POV of a homicidal shooter. Needless to say, this is the darkest track on the record. Shades of King Crimson, Rush and Radiohead come together on this one to create a creepy soundscape for this controversial topic. Glean from it what you will and discuss.